While many lined up in excitement to trade their hard-earned cash for the newly released Wii U, some users are reporting trouble transferring their account data from their original Wii console. Ars Technica gaming editor Kyle Orland shared the difficulties he encountered using Nintendo's complicated, strict DRM process. The first step involves inserting an SD card into the Wii U, where the card and console are registered online. Then put the card into the Wii where it must be verified using an internet connection, copy the game and account data onto the SD card, and the content is automatically deleted from the Wii. Finally, put the card back into the Wii U, verify the card via internet one last time, and copy the data onto the new console. All of this in the name of copyright protection and preventing people from playing games on multiple consoles.
Orland says that his Wii experienced an error in the transfer process, and the only way to retrieve his $400 of virtual console games and online save data for games like Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Mario Kart Wii is to pay Nintendo to repair his aging console. While this issue may only affect a small number of users, the bigger problem is Nintendo's antiquated stance on DRM. Other gaming platforms on the Xbox, PS3, and Steam don't bind accounts to a single device, which makes switching between computers and consoles relatively painless. In an age of cloud gaming, Nintendo needs to loosen its grip in lieu of a reasonable consumer experience.